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McDonald’s criticised by customers for switching from plastic to paper straws

Written by Varsha Saraogi on Tuesday, 30 April 2019. Posted in News

McDonald’s rolled out paper straws in an attempt to reduce the use of single-use plastic and become more environment friendly. But some angered customers want the plastic ones back

McDonald’s criticised by customers for switching from plastic to paper straws

As the war on plastic continues, more supermarkets, bars and restaurants are doing their bit to cut down on waste. Given that around 8.5 billion plastic straws are thrown each year, it’s increasingly important to take steps to reduce its environmental impact. And fast-food franchise McDonald’s rolled out paper straws in June 2018 in all its 1,361 outlets in the UK and Ireland. However, it didn’t receive encouraging feedback as some detractors want to stop the change from plastic to paper. 

In fact, angry customers have signed petitions to bring back the plastic straws in McDonald’s and has already received over 42,000 signatures. Their main reason to do so is because they claim the paper straws dissolve in the beverages, preventing customers from drinking their “milkshake proper.” There are also some who have left comments which said: “The paper straws go soggy and my drink taste different." 

It should be noted that a rival petition to ban plastic straws all together reached over 200,000 signatures in 2018.

Elsewhere, McDonalds’ customers took to Twitter to complain about how the paper straws are a big concern. The user using the soubriquet @Edg1e said: “It’s now impossible to drink a McDonald’s milkshake.”


Furthermore, the plastic ones are being sold on eBay for £1,000. Clearly, some customers value the milkshake taste much more than the environmental damage.

Altough, McDonald’s isn’t alone in trying to eliminate plastic and devise alternative solutions for plastic. Restaurant and pub chains like JD Wetherspoon, All Bar One, Wagamama, Pizza Express and coffee franchises like Costa Coffee too have pledged to take steps to solve the global plastic problem. 

Despite the criticism, franchises must opt out of these single-use plastic products. And it seems like McDonald’s will stick to its decision of having paper straws. 

About the Author

Varsha Saraogi

Varsha Saraogi

As feature writer and a recent MA Journalism graduate, Varsha has joined the Elite team to fuel her passion. Along with being immersed in the money making sector and ranting about women’s rights, she will be hunting for news about everything business related. And burying her head in economic magazines. Follow her on twitter at @msvarshasaraogi for her mundane musings.

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